The Carneros Inn is an all-age favorite
The Carneros Inn is an all-age favorite

Given that the focus in Napa Valley is wine, it’s easy to conclude that it is not a kid-friendly place. Au contraire! Napa is a wonderful getaway and I was thrilled to get a list of fun activities with kids from the concierge at The Westin Verasa Napa. Here are my top 5 picks from the list …

Trees of Stone

Ace wizard Harry Potter himself couldn’t have done a better job of turning trees into stone than Mother Nature did at the Petrified Forest. Hike through the woods and learn about how water and silica transform wood into rock.

400 Petrified Forest Road, Calistoga
Time: Daily 9a-7p (winter 9a-5p)
Phone: (707) 942.6667

(un)Natural at the di Rosa Preserve

The di Rosa Preserve houses 2,000 works of art by more than 800 artists. The preserve is located on 217 acres in Napa Valley. (un)Natural is an exhibition of works of art interpreting nature and created by Bay Area artists.

Carneros Highway 121, Napa
Time: Wednesday-Friday 9:30a-3p and Saturday by appointment
Phone: (707) 226.5991

Gawk at a Geyser

Kids and adults alike are fascinated by the Old Faithful Geyser, which erupts every 30 minutes or so like its more famous cousin in Wyoming. There is also a petting zoo with goats, sheep, and llamas to occupy kids while they are waiting for all the action.

1200 Tubbs Lane, Calistoga
Time: Daily 9a-6p (winter 9a-5p)
Phone: (707) 942.6463

Go on a Safari

Just like Africa, safari-style tours at Safari West combine a a jeep tour and walk around a wildlife compound complete with antelope, giraffe, wildebeest, zebra, and dozens of other animals roaming the wine country foothills.

3115 Porter Creek Road, Santa Rosa
Time: March 8-November, Daily Tours at 9a, 1p, and 4p
Phone: (707) 579.2551

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Take the Train

The Napa Valley Wine Train offers a Gourmet Lunch Train experience, with children welcome to enjoy wine country cuisine at a special rate (kids’ menus are not available, but some dishes can be modified). During the holidays, families can also enjoy the Santa Train, including hot cocoa and cookies, caroling and more.

1275 McKinstry Street, Napa
Time: Varies
Phone: (707) 253.2111

If you’d like to do a little wine tasting, the concierge recommends Sterling Vineyards for something that is more fun with kids. You start your visit with a tram ride to the top of the hill with panoramic views of Napa Valley. From there, take a self-guided tour (you can go as fast or as slowly as you like), and then the tasting room has sparkling juice for kids.


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